1and1 Incompetence, Victory?

I am very sorry I have not updated in awhile. To be brutally frank, I was almost afraid to write this post, as if it would jinx my good fortune.

You see, after all of my months of complaining and screaming and demanding, I finally got results! David Rubel admitted all of the errors and apologized for all of my troubles. He was very conciliatory, even offering some substantial monetary concessions to make up for all of the aggravation they caused me. Continue reading

1and1 Incompetence, Day 123

I changed up my post numbering.  “Part” was just not reflecting the extent of this situation.

April 10, Day 123 of my 1and1 Nightmare:

7:47 AM

David Rubel, 1and1 Billing :

Please call me at 877-300-8316 Extension 2525 or please provide me with a numebr and time I can call you at so i can assist you in resolving this issue.

10:51 AM  My Reply:

No.

We tried that on January 13, and you lied to me.  I will only deal with you in writing, and very publicly.

I want your boss.

You told me you did not have the authority to fix this, and that “upper management” was looking into it.  You specifically told me Damion Son was working on it.

Well, Damion is the one who had me sign and fax documents TO YOU to cancel these domains, and is now acting like these are brand new issues unrelated to that.

I think you are both liars and thieves, and nothing you have done has proven me wrong yet.

You have had every opportunity to fix this.  You have proven that you are either incapable of or unwilling to correct your errors.

Besides, there is nothing I can add that you have not already received dozens of times and chosen to ignore.

I have submitted plenty of documentation that would allow you to fix this, and you ignored it.

I have explained it every way possible.

I have sent signed faxes and dozens of emails.

Every email, fax and explanation is now available to the public at http://RippedOffConsumers.org. And from the response I am receiving, they are on my side.

I keep getting messages from people who had similar billing problems with 1and1, and just gave up and paid the bill.

I don’t give up.

I don’t shut up.

For a very quick summary visit OPEN LETTER TO ANYONE AT 1AND1 WITH COMMON SENSE at http://rippedoffconsumers.org/1and1-complaints/open-letter-to-anyone-at-1and1-with-common-sense/

I sent you your own personal copy, but I guess you ignored that, too.

Just in case you “lose” this email and need easy access to the entire history, I am currently ranking number 1 on Google for “David Rubel 1and1”.

11:10 AM  David Rubel:

We are attempting to process refunds for any double charges and other incorrect domains but we will not be able to fully help and figure out what is going on without being able to speak to you and resolve this once and for all.

Please provide me with a number or call me at the number I previously provided so we can resolve this.

12:04 PM  My Reply:

You had your chance(s), and lied to me.

I do not trust you.

If it is necessary to deal with you to fix this, I will only do so in writing so there is absolutely no confusion.  No more runaround.

I want your boss.

Attached is the fax I sent on March 10 at Damion Son’s request, fully two months after I began sending YOU the same information.

The necessary corrections to the April invoice are available in the email I sent TO YOU and everyone else at 1and1 last night, and at http://rippedoffconsumers.org/1and1-complaints/open-letter-to-anyone-at-1and1-with-common-sense/

If you want to go straight to the spreadsheet, just click here.  http://rippedoffconsumers.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/summary_of_1and1_fraudulent_charges.htm

The explanations just don’t get any simpler.

Those documents are publicly available, and have already been spidered by Google, Yahoo, Live, and several other engines, so I don’t think you will have any trouble finding them.

No one has yet provided me with the answers to the questions raised in that document.

The only thing you could do by phone that you cannot do with those documents is antagonize me further.

Either fix it according to the provided information, or submit to me IN WRITING why you refuse to do so on a domain by domain basis.

If you are incapable of understanding those simple documents, have your boss take a look at them.

And I want an apology for the way I have been treated.

A REAL one, not just “we are sorry you don’t know how to use our broken and shoddy systems”.

12:18 PM David Rubel:

Dear Brian Gothard, (Cust: XXXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

We are issuing a refund for the following domains totaling 179.80. Also your transfer will be activated and processed per your request. If you have any questions comments or concerns please respond to this email.

4gclick.com
broadcastyoursite.com
businesspressroom.com
obamalies.org
christiannewsreleases.com
christianpressreleases.com
churchnewsrelease.com
churchpressreleases.com
lifesavingjobs.com
myformattedresume.com
myprbuddy.com
myreputationgenie.com
petdailynews.com
prnewsagency.com
prnewssource.com
publicitygenie.com
reputationgenie.com
restaurantmojo.com
resumecircle.com
zipmojo.com

If you have any further questions do not hesitate to contact us.


Sincerely
David Rubel
Billing Department
1&1 Internet Inc.

2:26 PM My Reply:

That only fixes a portion of the problems, and creates another opportunity for 1and1 to get “confused” about the situation.

Your $179.80 credit would still leave $423.50 worth of bogus charges on my account.

Invoice XXXXXXXXX is the original problem. It should have been $35.96 instead of $188.79, per the fax I just forwarded.

You refunded the entire amount on XXXXXXXXX. I still owe you $17.98 for that one.

Invoice XXXXXXXXX is a complete fiasco. It includes double billing for the same domains from Invoice XXXXXXXXX, plus all of the domains I canceled during March. That invoice should be credited in full.

Plus there is a Late Fee in my account that I expect to be removed.

I owe you a grand total of $53.94, and have been trying to pay it for months.

I have been running multimillion dollar companies for 15 years, and it is obvious that this mess will continue to get worse unless drastic action is taken. This is not a problem that can be fixed within normal procedures. You let it get way too far out of hand.

Here are my suggestions:

To keep from creating more confusion and screwing up the account even further, CREDIT EVERYTHING. Get the account to $0 and start over.

1. You already credited XXXXXXXXX via XXXXXXXXX. Let it ride.

2. Issue a credit for $188.79 to offset XXXXXXXXX.

3. Issue a credit for $341.62 to offset XXXXXXXXX.

4. Remove or offset the Late Fee for $18.95. I would prefer it be removed completely, because it offends me to be accused of late payments when I have tried every way I know how to resolve this.

5. Issue a brand new invoice. I have created an identical format to your invoice, so it should be easy to understand.

Continued…

1and1 Incompetence, Part 1

This is the first in a series of articles outlining the incompetence, dishonesty, and outright fraud I have been subjected to by 1and1.  1and1 claims to provide web hosting and domain name services.  What they actually provide are headaches and heartaches and very little else.

In November of 2008, I purchased a bulk lot of 270+ domain names from a 1and1 client.  I am going to call him Seller to protect the innocent.  I had never done business with 1and1 before, so I had no idea of the nightmare I was about to get involved in.  If I knew then what I know now, I would have run as far and as fast as I could away from 1and1.  Any benefit I get from that purchase will forever be tainted by their ineptitude.

On December 8, 2008, Seller faxed the appropriate Transfer Request Form, supplied by 1and1, to their Transfers Department.

On December 10, Seller received an email acknowledging the request, along with a promise that the transfer would be completed within 24 hours.  It was not.

Seller contacted them again when there was no transfer or further communication from 1and1, and on December 18, he received this message:

From: <transfer@1and1.com>
To: Seller
Sent: Thursday, December 18, 2008 1:29 PM
Subject: Re: CXXXXXXXXX Contract Move

Dear Seller, (Customer ID: XXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

We currently experiencing an issue with the contract moves. Our
administrators are working on resolving this issue as quickly as
possible. We will send you an email with updates shortly.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.


Sincerely,
Employee Name Removed
Transfers Department
1&1 Internet

Seller contacted them again on Monday, and received this reply:

From: <transfer@1and1.com>
To: Seller
Sent: Monday, December 22, 2008 8:36 AM
Subject: CXXXXXXXXX

Dear Seller, (Customer ID: XXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

I apologize for the delay in moving your contract over, but we had an
issue with our ability to perform certain tasks within our system.

We will be performing the move today, but before we do that, I would
have to ask that you back up all of your webspace data and any e-mails.

Once you have done this, please let me know and we will begin the move.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.


Sincerely,
Employee Name Removed
Transfers Department
1&1 Internet

Seller told them to go ahead and do what he had asked on multiple occasions for them to do.

On December 30, I sent the following message

From: “Brian Gothard”
To: <president@1and1.com>
Cc: <transfer@1and1.com>; <support@1and1.com>; <complaints@1and1.com>; Seller
Sent: Tuesday, December 30, 2008 8:22 PM
Subject: FW: CXXXXXXXXX

Dear Sir or Madame,

As a technology consultant, I regularly recommend web services to my clients.  I am expanding my services to include more web related products and have been researching and evaluating providers for several months.

1and1 has failed miserably.

The inability of your company to complete the transfer referenced in the thread below in a reasonable amount of time has left me with a very bad impression of your service.

I fully understand how much impact software systems problems can have on a normal business.  That is my job: to address and correct issues with technology.  I can commiserate with your situation.  But this process was started on December 9, according to Employee Name Removed.

Even accounting for the holidays that is 12 normal business days.  That seems an unreasonable amount of time to me to perform something that ties directly to your core business process.  This is a simple transfer from one customer number to another.
No matter how extensive or convoluted your processes are, this cannot possibly require that much time to complete.
Keep in mind that Mr. Seller has been having extensive problems managing the domains for several weeks prior to this.  It seems your entire system is insufficient for your business.

My customer number is XXXXXXXX.  Please address this situation with your employees and let me know when I can expect some results.

Respectfully,
Brian Gothard
Technology Consultant
http://BrianGothard.com

The president account bounced, of course.  I didn’t really expect it to land, but I had to try.  More importantly; I never received a response from anyone at 1and1.  Not even an acknowledgment.

After several more days with no further information from 1and1, Seller called them.  Here is what he sent me:

From: Seller
Sent: Wednesday, January 07, 2009 2:44 PM
To: Brian Gothard
Subject: FYI: Re: CXXXXXXXXX – Follow Up..

Brian,

I just spoke with Dave at 1and1. He is a manager at 1and1. He confirmed to me that they have moved some of the domains to your account. The move will finish tomorrow.

Regards,

Seller

That is David Rubel.  Remember that name; he is the Billing Manager and he comes up quite often.  Notice he confirms that some of the domains have already been moved. That is an outright lie, as proven by the email Seller received the following day:

From: <redemption@1and1.com>
To: “Seller” Seller
Sent: Thursday, January 08, 2009 12:47 PM
Subject: CXXXXXXXXX contract move

Dear Seller, (Customer ID: XXXXXXXX)

Thank you for contacting us.

We are currently having issues with our contracts not moving correctly.
We are working on resolving the issue as quickly as possible. What we can do for you is transfer the domains into another contract but this requires you to back up all of your information. If this is something that you would be interested in, email us back and we can start that process for you. We will be sending you an update via email once we have this issue resolved.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

Sincerely,
Employee Name Removed
Transfers Department
1&1 Internet

Seller replied immediately that they should just perform the transfer as requested.

So, as of January 8, we have several 1and1 employees admitting that they cannot accomplish the transfer, and that the domains are still not accessible by either Seller or myself.  That is a full month during which 1and1 was unable to provide any administrative interface to their customer.  No way to manage or control any of these 270+ domains.

The domains were not actually transferred until January 15, but I will continue the details in my next post.

Sick and Tired of Getting Ripped Off?

If you are like me, you are fed up with being treated unfairly by big companies.  Once upon a time, the customer was always right.  Businesses realized that only by satisfying their clients could they hope to grow and prosper.

Smart companies still operate that way today, but there are those which have made it their practice to treat their customers like garbage.

Disposable clientele.

They believe that if that customer is not happy and decides to leave, they will just pick up another one or three to replace them.  And sadly, many times that is true.  With thousands of new people getting on line every day, it is not difficult to replace a customer or two.

But what these impersonal monoliths do not realize is that there are those of us out here who will not simply take their crap and move on.  We choose to warn others of our bad experiences.

We choose to stand up and fight.  We choose to spread our stories far and wide in the hopes that someone else can avoid repeating our mistakes.

For that purpose, I have established this website as a digital soap box.  I have a handful of customer service nightmares of my own to post here, and I will be partnering with other consumer advocacy sites to bring you more comprehensive information, but I want to hear your stories.

I am offering you a place to voice your complaint and strike a blow against unfair practices, bad customer service, and in some cases outright fraud. I will also be providing how to articles and links to resources where you can initiate effective consumer complaints, such as the Federal Trade Commission, your State Attorney General, various Better Business Bureaus and the like.

What can you or I do as one person?  Very little.

What can you AND I do, along with a few hundred thousand like minded individuals who are sick of being pushed around?  We can spread the word about these companies who choose to mistreat their customers and convince others to avoid putting themselves in the same situation.

Together, we can strike a blow against indifference and bring customer service back!

This site is in its infancy.  I am still working on a lot of the functionality, including the submission form, but you can submit your story for possible inclusion through our Contact Us page.  Make sure to include as much detail as possible, and be prepared to back up your claims.  I am not interested in undocumented bashing, because that does not do any good.  I want dates, names, and specific details.  Don’t worry if you are not a writer.  Submit your story and I will edit it for clarity.  I may need to contact you for more information before publishing. So, go ahead, click here to submit your story.

Make sure to bookmark the site and come back often to check up on the latest warnings.